Viral Marketing to Gen Y
Vancouver, BC Canada
• Defining generations
• Gen Y characteristics
• Changes in communication and marketing
• Online interactive audiences
• How to participate online
• Challenges and opportunities
• Questions and discussion
Silent Generation 1925-1944
Baby Boomers 1945-1964
Gen X 1965-1977
Gen Y/Millenials 1978-1994
“In their world, they need only
be exposed to things
immediately relevant to them
and nothing more.
Their mantra might as well be
‘what I want when I want it.’ ”
Betsey Frank 2003
This is a curious generation
and they satisfy curiosities
They want good pay and rapid career
advancement - in an environment with
values similar to their own.
They want to feel nurtured, free to be
social, and have fun.
They embrace multiple
modes of self-expression
• ¾ have created a profile on a
social networking site
• 20% have posted a video of
themselves online (compared to
6% of Gen Xers and 2% of
100 Images Per Minute
(1.6666666666666666666666666666667 per second)
This makes people less trusting.
So, how do we reach them?
Interruptive marketing has
seen its day.
relevance is everything.
Sharing Blanket statements
Talking & Listening Telling
Word of mouth Cold calling
Viral Marketing TV commercials
More video was uploaded to YouTube in
the last 2 months than if ABC, NBC and
CBS had been airing new content
24/7/365 since 1948
Over 500 million active members
People spend over 700 billion minutes
Per month on Facebook
… And Google + is just warming up.
Over 145 million accounts
Yearly growth rate is 1,382%
Changes in Communication
The audience is choosing what, when,
and how they gather information.
So, who’s doing what online?
Social Technographics Ladder
The Social Technographics
Profile of Gen Y
The Social Technographics
Profile of Boomers
Okay, now we have an idea
of who’s doing what online…
Check out what others are doing.
Listen to what people are talking about.
Transparency is key
Make sure to
include others in the process…
Your online success depends on it.
A few reminders…
What goes on the internet,
stays on the internet… forever.
Don’t try to lead your audience.
(GM Chevy Tahoe)
New opportunities and creative ways to
connect: think big and be genuine
(Langara Rethink Scholarship)
The Future of Online
Communications (Web 3.0)
• Interactive technologies are being
created and improved daily
• Individuals will be as much a part of
the online experience as e-mail or
browsers are now
• Rapid increase of online participants
(more people, more companies,
The Digital Generation is growing up
(anyone born after 1995)
The first generation to only know
a world with internet and
cell smart phones.
‘If you see a tsunami
coming, start swimming
with the current.’
1. Journal of College & Teaching Learning/ Professor Susan
2. Generations at work/ R. Zemke, C. Raines, B. Filipczak/
3. Online Business Week/ Pallavi Gogoi/ 2007
4. Gen Y: Too Demanding at Work? /CaeerBuilder.com /
Anthony Balderrama/ 2006
5. Understanding Gen Y/ Sophia Yan/ 2006
6. www.todmaffin.com / Tod Maffin/ 2008
7. Groundswell/ C. Li, J. Bernoff/ 2008
8. Cluetrain Manifesto, The/ C. Locke, D. Searls, D.
9. Pew Research Centre February 2010 Millenial Report.
10. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn statistic pages, September